Publication of Peter Rabbit Books
In Potter’s early 20s, she tried to get her children’s book and drawings published, but was unsuccessful. Nevertheless, she was determined about it and eventually the book was published by Frederick Warne & Company. The first book was published in 1902 when she was 36. It was Norman, the youngest brother in the company, who insisted that each drawing of Peter Rabbit would be in colour. Potter insisted that the book remain small, so that it would be easy for children to hold. And eventually, by the end of the year, 28,000 copies were in print.
The relationship between Norman Warne and Beatrix blossomed, and eventually, they became engaged in 1906. But tragically, before the wedding could take place, Norman passed away, dying of pernicious anaemia. After his death, Potter moved to the Lakeland. In her later life, her eyesight started failing, leading her to stop writing books. But instead, she devoted her time to the breading of sheep and in the conservation of Lakeland farms. Potter married William Heelis in 1913, when she was 47. Even though the couple was childless, Potter played an active role in William’s extended family, endearing herself to his many nieces of his brothers and sisters.